Root Canal Treatment Back

When the nerve of a tooth becomes infected, successful root canal treatment can allow an individual to keep the tooth rather having to remove it. Keeping your tooth will help prevent other teeth from drifting out of line and causing jaw issues. Saving a natural tooth also saves on having to replace it with an artificial tooth.

The way it works is to remove infected, injured or dead pulp from your tooth. The space inside the hard layer of each tooth is called the root canal system. This system is usually with soft dental pulp made of nerves and blood vessels. This will allow your tooth to grow and develop.

When bacteria enters the tooth through deep cavities, cracks or flawed fillings, the tooth can become abscessed. An abscessed tooth will cause pain or swelling. Dentists might notice the infection from a dental x-ray or from the changes with the tooth itself. If left untreated, an abscessed tooth will cause serious oral health problems and damage other teeth.

The dentist might do the root canal treatment or refer you to an endodontist. An endodontist is someone who completed a university post-grad specialty program in endodontics. This specialty can allow the dentist to understand the treatment of the dental pulp or nerve of a tooth.

The treatment is performed in simple steps. Initially the doctor freezes the area around the tooth, the dentist will place a rubber dam around the tooth being treated to protect your tooth from bacteria in your saliva, the dentist then makes an opening in the tooth to reach the root canal system and the damaged pulp. At this point, the dentist will use very fine instruments to remove the pulp by cleaning and enlarging the root canal system. After the canal has been cleaned, the dentist will fill and seal the canal. Last but not least, the opening of the tooth is then sealed with a temporary or permanent filling.

After a root canal treatment, the tooth needs to be restored to look and feel and work as much as a natural tooth as possible. IF an endodontist performed the root canal treatment, they will most likely fill the opening of the tooth with a temporary filling and send you back to your dentist or a prosthodontist for tooth restoration.

This dental specialist will then restore and replace teeth using crowns, bridges, dentures and implants. Your dentist or specialist will use permanent filling or a crown to restore your tooth. The choice will depend on the strength of the part of the tooth that is left. A back tooth would most likely need a crown because chewing puts a great deal of pressure on the tooth. If there is not enough of the tooth left, posts might be used to help support the crown.

Root canal treatments can be done in 1 or 2 appointments. After the treatment is complete, your tooth will most likely be tender for the first week or two. Pain and swelling are not common, if this happens, call the endodontist or dentist that treated you initially. Yes, you can still get cavities or gum disease after a root canal treatment. This treatment does not protect your tooth from other types of damage. Care for your teeth properly and visit the dentist regularly and it could last as long as your other teeth. Most of the time, if you've had a root canal treatment, your tooth could be saved.

While most root canal treatments are successful, sometimes, a second root canal treatment needs to be done. This is called retreatment. When retreating a tooth, the root canal filling materials are taken out and the canal is recleaned, reshaped and refilled.

At times, root  canal surgery is necessary when a regular root canal treatment cannot be done or when it has failed to work. Surgery would be done to check the end of the root for fractures or cracks, remove part of the root that could not be cleaned during a regular root canal, or to clear up an infection that did not heal properly after regular treatment.